AMA: I hate my Banking job. Most likely transferring to Back office.

Hello everyone. I'm an investment banking analyst and I.. hate my job to put it lightly. I'm also terrible at it, which is mostly due to how much I hate it (I was a top 2 analyst until I just started hating everything). No, I'm not throwing myself a pity party.

I'm interviewing for back office roles at a credit card arm at my BB that's more focused on strategy and implementing AI. I'm pretty excited. AMA, I guess? I've never seen somebody do the reverse in this group.

Investment Banking Interview Course

  • 7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. Crowdsourced from over 500,000 members.
  • Technical, behavioral, networking, case videos, templates. All included.
  • Most comprehensive IB interview course in the world.

Comments (129)

Jul 11, 2018

Did you go to H/Y/P/W/S?

Jul 21, 2018

I didn't! I wasn't really interested in going ivy for undergrad. I attended a pretty specific type of school, and I could easily give my identity away if I revealed it. I will say that it was in New England and was a top 40 liberal arts college. I've never regretted that choice since it was a perfect fit for me :)

    • 1
Jul 11, 2018

I actually wrote a post about this called the Zero Stress Life, and I'm basically in the same shoes as you. Non-target (I'm an accounting major though trying to go Big 4 or something stable, yet manageable) and I'm looking for something that may pay less, but that I won't hate. So I'm in the same boat as you 100% bro.

    • 2
Jul 21, 2018

It's funny--I'm actually totally not averse to stress! I thrive in those circumstances. The problem is that I hate the job, I hate the product (I'm in capital markets, but I regularly work the worse end of coverage hours), and the team leave a lot to be desired. I have a decent amount of experience with artificial intelligence and I know it's a growing area, so hopping in and doing something more focused on growth vs. pure deals is very much up my alley. I just needed something that I knew I could grow in and actually enjoy.

Plus, this also leaves me more time to nurture a few passions--like politics! :)

Jul 11, 2018

Curious. Are you worried about the pay decrease? What are the compensations/differences like?
Great that you identified you hated it so early. Nothing like hating coming to work in the morning. What are you exit plans/career plans now? Consulting or strategy at a f100 I presume?

Learn More

7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. The WSO Investment Banking Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to start your career on Wall Street. Technical, Behavioral and Networking Courses + 2 Bonus Modules. Learn more.

Most Helpful
Jul 21, 2018

I think I might take a major paycut, but I'm not certain. The role I'll be moving to is extremely new and it's focused on building up our AI capabilities more than anything else. I'm lucky to be debt free so I'm not worried about the paycut. I'm a bit of a boring person I'm afraid--I like cooking at home, going to happy hour with friends, and reading policy briefs--so I don't think a paycut will cut into my lifestyle too much.

I wish I had identified it sooner, honestly. The prestige of banking will get to you. I was the first sophomore from my college in years to get an investment banking internship, and the "prestige" and "oohs, aaaahs" I got really overrode my instincts screaming at me that this was not the job for me. It's dumb, but hell, I was young and I believe everything happens for a reason. I made some amazing contacts and mentors, and it was actually one of the mentors I made who advised me that if I hated what I was doing I should seek other opportunities at the firm.

I'm not sure yet. My friend's uncle offered me an interview at a private equity shop, but at this point I know I don't want to take it. I think I might look at consulting or strategy options, most likely focused on tech, or I might exit to Washington, D.C. as a policy advisor. I know some people down in DC that are really interested in somebody with some Wall Street and tech experience (and I have both).

I know that what I will find most fulfilling is the ability to have a career where I can make an impact on people's lives (impact investing, maybe policy advisor, etc) while at the same time being able to pay the mortgage on time. The drive to have something like that has carried me through high school, college, and now this job. I'm still figuring it out. Maybe I'll create something totally new and found my own firm. I'm leaving myself open to any and all options :)

Knowing myself, I think the "lucrative small business/crazy startup" lifestyle suits me best, while continuing to work on campaigns. I'd love to have a small business with my sister, exit into a White House policy team (Senior Analyst, etc.) and then either go back to my business or continue working in DC for a couple different Senators while pursuing different ventures on the side at incubators.

But again, I thought I'd be working my way towards a PE gig and clearly that's not the case, so maybe it's prudent for me to tell you to check in with me in 5 years for what could possibly be a totally different plan!

    • 16
Jul 11, 2018

Sounds like you've really thought this stuff out. Very cool, go after your something you're interested in then. At the end of the day prestige and money only matter if you want it to matter, as long as the bills are paid and you've got food on the table then the rest is always up to you. Go trail your own path, it's your life and it should be set to be as fulfilling as you can make it for yourself, however that might be.

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

That's my motto :) My parents are extremely successful entrepreneurs, and something they always told me really stuck--if you chase money, you'll never earn it. I need to find what I'm good at, and after my startup became successful, I realized that I had a really awesome mind for business strategy and growth-related positions. I'm decent at taking complex information and making it simple, I have enough chutzpah to tell my boss to fuck off in the most polite and office-friendly way possible, and I've got a serious passion for politics that has caused me to work 100 hour weeks with a shit-eating grin.

You've gotta know yourself well enough to know what you're good and bad at and what drives you,, and after that, focus on what you're good at and adjust it to make it work for you. That's the best advice I've ever received. Case en pointe: I have a close friend that thinks human beings are insane and likes to be alone. She also loves animals, but volunteering at shelters doesn't pay the bills and she faints at the sight of blood. She's now an insanely successful quant and works friendly enough hours to work at a local shelter :) She's quite happy. She just scored an interview at a hedge fund and she's thinking about going for it because she loves the team.

I SUCK at this job because I hate it. That was a dead-on sign that I should really not be doing it.

    • 3
Jul 11, 2018

As the guy above said, you've put a lot of thinking into this, and all I can say is that you're an inspiration and Godspeed!

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Thank you! I appreciate it! :)

Jul 13, 2018

Great post! I think you've got your head in the right place.

Just a piece of advice on D.C....just because you're interested in policy doesn't mean that D.C. is the right place for you. Basically, your job for the first 20 years or more in D.C. (if you last that long) will be implementing someone else's policies, often times ones you don't agree with.

In some sense, it's almost better to have no interest in policies and to just be power hungry - that's the type of person that thrives best in D.C. People who are actually interested in policy realize that its all bullshit after a few years and leave.

    • 2
Jul 21, 2018

Yeah.. That's super solid advice. I saw a bit of that in DC. That's why I went into finance first. I'm not sure how I'm going to crack DC yet--but I'll do another AMA thread when I do haha

Jul 13, 2018

Agree with @NoEquityResearch. DC draws a lot of kids hopped up on West Wing marathons and wanting to "change the world / do good," who end up working to support policies that will get their candidate the most dollars during election season. If you're successful and a rainmaker in other ways (e.g., big shot MD, run your own shop), you can probably influence policy through donations and being involved in politics at a higher level than going to work in the field at this stage in your life. Add that to what seems like your deep policy knowledge (esp. for someone who doesn't work in the space), and you'll be fighting off invites from Sally Quinn's parties and donation dinners with your politician of choice before you know it.

I seriously considered doing policy work for a long time, so happy to chat more over PM.

    • 3
Jul 11, 2018

I have massive respect for someone with the stones to post a "IB to Back Office: AMA" thread. But life's too short to wake up every morning hating your job.

    • 8
    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Thank you! Yeah.. I wake up every morning dreading walking into work. The happiest part of my day is walking out of the office, and my vacation was borderline euphoria. I gained weight from the stress alone.

Totally not worth it.

    • 1
Funniest
Jul 11, 2018

This'll be a nice contrast from the usual: "I grew up in a sewer and went to a non-target in Syria, now I'm in IB" posts.

    • 32
Jul 21, 2018

I did not grow up in a sewer but I DID grow up with water I could set on fire. Does that count? It was hella fun on prom night!

Jul 11, 2018

Cleveland?

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Can't reveal too much incriminating information but no, not Cleveland!

Jul 11, 2018

My dad lived in Cleveland when the Cuyahoga River caught on fire. He thought that was a good sign to move.

Jul 21, 2018

There's a reason they call Cleveland the "mistake by the Lake" haha

    • 1
    • 1
Jul 13, 2018

Flint, Michigan!

Jul 21, 2018

;)

Aug 16, 2018

Comment of the week for me. +1 SB.

Jul 11, 2018

We all need a chuckle or two sometimes in this field

Jul 11, 2018

Post history indicates you initially wanted to transfer out of capital markets to a coverage group. Why'd you give up on that idea?

Jul 21, 2018

It's still a consideration, but I realized that to effectively transfer I'd have to learn how to model. I bought a PC (I only had Mac before) and the idea of opening it to create a DCF was painful. I just realized that banking isn't what I want to do, and why do more of something I.. don't want to do? I'll create my own path. The most successful people I've met created their own opportunities so that's what I'm trying to do now.

Jul 12, 2018

Have to give you kudos (not giving you my bananas) for this thread. An original.

MSFS Incoming Intern

Jul 21, 2018

All kudos and bananas welcome :) Thank you! Back office gets no love haha

Jul 12, 2018

Will comment/PM later.

Jul 21, 2018

:)

Jul 12, 2018

Just curious, why not go for Corp Dev at a firm like Google of Facebook? A lot less hours, great pay and I assume it's more interesting than back office.

Jul 21, 2018

Hey FutureProspects! A couple different reasons:

  1. Normally, corp dev teams look for people with coverage experience, and while I'm a smart cookie and could probably teach myself modeling, I didn't think facing an uphill battle for a job at Facebook or Google was very appealing.
  2. A lot of the plush strategy/corp dev jobs overwhelmingly go to MBAs. I'm not sure if I even want an MBA--massive money suck with little payoff--and I want to be in an intellectually stimulating role right now. There's actually a running joke among my friends at Google/Facebook about these super brilliant people in really dumb roles but they stick around because of the perks.
  3. I want to be in a place where I have strong relationships with people. I've been at my current firm for a long time now. Some of these guys have known me since I was 19 years old when I first started recruiting hardcore, and I'm very close to being 24 now. That's huge. This team is super pro-investing in juniors and most of these guys are ex-consultants or bankers, and that's super appealing to me. I know there are folks on the team that will go to bat for me if I do well.
  4. I've been told that some of the top ways to gain the best experience is either a.) inherit a mess or b.) build something. I've built a company from the ground up (literally over cup ramen) so I'm so incredibly stoked to do this again. Building out our AI platform in a small team with a relatively flat structure will allow me to pick up new skills, create relationships across the firm, and grow fast. It will also let me explore how serious I am about technology and especially AI. It also gives me a front row seat to the future of lending in the world and the role technology will inevitably play--both things I'm very interested in, particularly how they impact minority and poor communities.
  5. Guys, I'll get to cook dinner at home!! At. Home. AND spend time with my super neglected boyfriend! I'm willing to work very, very hard, but I'll do it my way in what I'm interested in doing. Not slaving away at a role I despise.
    • 4
Jul 12, 2018

What happened to the first company you built over your cup of ramen?

Jul 21, 2018

If I reveal that I'll give away my identity. Suffice to say it went well enough that if I marry my current partner, we'll be debt free.

Jul 12, 2018

Did you sell it or is it currently generating income?

Jul 21, 2018

I think it's best if I just don't say. You're welcome to PM me though!

Jul 12, 2018

What does marrying your partner have to do with your company and/or being debt free?

Jul 21, 2018

He's got really significant student loans. I'm basically saying I could cover them.

    • 1
Jul 12, 2018

I see. You're the real MVP.

Jul 21, 2018

Thank you! :)

Jul 12, 2018

I don't consider a company worth 300k (and that's assuming astronomical student loans) that impressive. Sorry. I know plumbers and landscapers whose companies are worth more than that.

    • 6
Jul 21, 2018

Thank goodness I wasn't seeking your approval! Just a good time and a good experience in my early 20s! And if it covered some student loans--all the better!

    • 4
Jul 12, 2018

-Has super secret "company" you can't talk about even without naming it because it would "out" you that you started over a "cup of ramen"

-"Wasn't interested" in attending an Ivy League school (surely not sour grapes because you weren't admitted to any of them....yeah ok)

-Went a "top 40" liberal arts college that you can't identify, again, because you're so well known you would out yourself

-Post in a ridiculous Pollyanna style, complete with smiley faces

-Thinks you deserve to "enjoy" your job, because no one should ever have to do anything they're not passionate about to pay the bills, no sir.

3/10 low quality trolling

    • 7
    • 3
Jul 16, 2018
dsch:

-Thinks you deserve to "enjoy" your job, because no one should ever have to do anything they're not passionate about to pay the bills, no sir.

I think this miserable mentality is a significant reason why people still work in high finance gigs tbh. You definitely deserve to enjoy your job, or at least not hate it. Plenty of jobs out there that will more than cover your bills, you shouldn't spend over half your life wasting time on something you aren't excited about.

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

+1 I totally get doing a job because it's a stepping stone to something else but if you fucking hate the idea of investment banking then the job might not be for you! shrugs

Jul 21, 2018

It's kind of astonishing how this mentality flourishes so much in WSO. It's also pretty gross.

  • "Has super secret company": You guessed it. Turns out I don't want to leak my identity all over the internet since finance is such a tiny world. Who would have thought?
  • "Wasn't interested in attending an ivy league": I didn't apply to a single ivy league school. Why? I wasn't interested. Turns out not everybody gets wet at the idea of bragging at bars about the college they attend. I had a fantastic college experience and I didn't turn out worse for it.
  • Went to a "top 40" liberals arts college: Do you know how tiny finance is? There aren't a ton of kids from my school on Wall Street. I'm not going to take unnecessary risks for you.
  • "Post in ridiculous Polyanna style, complete with smiley faces": The fuck do you have against smiley faces? That's so sad :(
  • "Things you deserve to "enjoy" your job": Yes. I have the audacity to believe I should be happy. 100% I am arrogant, entitled, and awful enough to believe that I should want to grow in my role and actually gain some type of enjoyment out of it. I'll own that.

0/10 bitter people suck.

    • 8
Jul 12, 2018

You have the mind of a child. Can't wait for the world to slap you in the face someday.

    • 4
Jul 17, 2018

Auditors, man...

Aide-toi, et Dieu t'aidera.

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Spoken like a true cynic. The world slapped me in the face a fairly long time ago. I look forward to viewing the ups and downs in my career with far less misery than you have shown on this post. Cheers! Hope you're less bitter offline.

Jul 20, 2018

lmao....listen to the girl instead, nothing but banal "oh I hate my life so should all of you" good luck to whatever you do, if you do ever possess the luxury of not letting your misery take control of you

Ty

    • 1
Jul 20, 2018

It is funny how you attempt to devalue, criticize, and drag down others accomplishments while providing comparisons to others (not even yourself!). I guess those who can't do will always try to tear others that do down. You must be a real treat for the people who have to deal with you daily.

    • 1
Jul 20, 2018

It is funny how you attempt to devalue, criticize, and drag down others accomplishments while providing comparisons to others (not even yourself!). I guess those who can't do will always try to tear others that do down. You must be a real treat for the people who have to deal with you daily.

Jul 12, 2018
LateralMonkey:
  1. A lot of the plush strategy/corp dev jobs overwhelmingly go to MBAs. I'm not sure if I even want an MBA--massive money suck with little payoff--and I want to be in an intellectually stimulating role right now. There's actually a running joke among my friends at Google/Facebook about these super brilliant people in really dumb roles but they stick around because of the perks.

"I used to joke with my colleagues that Larry & Sergey [founders of Google] go out on their yachts - tie them together ... smoke cigars, and put up pictures of[Google employees] with little snippets like "was a GM at multi-national telecomm company, got a Harvard MBA and is now answering Orkut tickets [Complaints for one of Google's social networking sites]." And then they would erupt in laughter and clink their cigars & Scotch together in celebration. This, of course, is highly unlikely given neither of them would ever smoke a cigar or drink Scotch. Remainder is plausible."

https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-advantantages-a...

Jul 21, 2018

Haha that must be where they got it! It really is this big joke and it just makes me really sad what people are willing to sacrifice for the name factor lol

Jul 16, 2018

You'd be surprised by the work that some of these prestigious people do at Google. I know of many ex-MBB consultants managing call center agents, and Ivy League undergrads cold calling/emailing SMBs and answering customer support tickets.

    • 1
Jul 12, 2018

Are they making good $$$ at least?

Jul 21, 2018

One can hope.. Yikes

Jul 12, 2018

Wow this was a super thorough response. Awesome stuff and I wish you the best of luck!

Jul 21, 2018

Thank you!! :)

Learn More

7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. The WSO Investment Banking Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to start your career on Wall Street. Technical, Behavioral and Networking Courses + 2 Bonus Modules. Learn more.

Jul 12, 2018

Along the lines of what FutureProspects said, why back office?

After interning a summer in IB, I absolutely hated it and had zero interest in going back. Ended up in a rotational FLDP at a F50 and it's been terrific: great pay, lots of vacation time, 45-50 hours a week, great culture, and the work is very interesting.

Jul 21, 2018

See above for my response to FutureProspects! I'm glad you found a role that suits you! :)

Jul 12, 2018

Check out some of the companies listed under capital markets & trading. A few are involved in AI.

https://cbi-blog.s3.amazonaws.com/blog/wp-content/...

Jul 21, 2018

I'll check it out! Maybe that's in my future! :) Thank you!

Jul 13, 2018

Think this sort of thing will become more and more common.

Millenials value different things to baby boomers. Working your life away for prestige and material things is not that appealing to a lot of millenials (and the rewards are not there to the extent they once were).

The alternative is a 9-5 which gives you time to focus on passions/side hustles in your free time and still pays enough to travel, eat good food etc..

Jul 21, 2018

Also, while banking is an amazing field to be in, it's just simply not practical if you're looking to grow your career in other areas. I know people that have been small time credit analysts and done some major fundraising for top Democratic/Republican candidates and exited into amazing gigs via those connections. I know folks pulling in 9-5s and doing some mean side hustles that are generating serious revenue (one of which just quit and is now pulling in $1mm+ a year while doing what he loves).

In today's world, if you hate what you are doing, you're going to suck at it and not do very well. Period. I will never regret going into banking because I think it happened for a reason (even if my nightly seamless orders make me question what the hell that reason was....) but I'm definitely ready to move on to something else.

Jul 13, 2018

would love to hear more about the side hustle

Jul 21, 2018

Haha it's a cool gig. Basically he noticed how many workplaces were struggling with the #metoo movement and started consulting on the side with sexual harassment training for different companies. Apparently he did similar work while in a frat in college so he was super familiar with the issue. It turned into some extremely lucrative contracts and he quit and started doing it fulltime. Pretty sure he's just going to live like a miser, save a crapton of money, and then travel the world. No joke. He's taking a trip to Tanzania in a few months.

Jul 13, 2018

thanks for sharing that...very impressive, and sounds like quite the fulfilling way to spend your time as well!

Jul 21, 2018

No worries! He's living the dream haha

Jul 21, 2018

Opportunity, my friend. Exploit any and all advantages, and if you love it--even better!

Another way I knew this job wasn't for me: Half my coworkers were extremely jealous of my successful entrepreneur friends/parents that could set their own hours after being absolute slaves to their side hustles/independent gigs for a long period of time.

Jul 13, 2018

Oh dear - are we seeing another "Stephen Ridley" (Apr 2012)?
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/life-after-...
That guy works for 16 months and kept ranting about how IBD is not for him, and after 6 years (Feb 2018), he is back doing the same thing - banking.
https://www.fnlondon.com/articles/junior-banker-tu...

Jul 21, 2018

Not quite. There's definitely a possibility that I'll go into private equity down the road or impact investing, and I've had interview offers in both, but I severely doubt I will ever re-enter banking.

If I do, it will need to be for a very compelling reason and heavily negotiated hours. I sincerely doubt that will happen.

Jul 13, 2018

Want to show you this clip. I think the guy was saying how people try to get away from the track because they wanted to be "different". Most successful people stay on the track by being boring and normal (i.e. Warren Buffett all his life was doing value investing). There are also consequences of staying off the track that people don't usually account for: i) whether they can still get back on the track if at all, ii) if not, the amount of extra work that they have to do just to get back on the track. Do have a few friends who are in the VP level and got off the track to do crazy things; after 2 years out of the industry, all the peers have moved on and there are no more seats for him at the table. High Finance itself is an extreme competitive industry (esp product people - i.e. DCM, LevFinance, M&A) and people usually underestimate how fast they become irrelevant as soon as they leave the industry.

    • 5
Jul 21, 2018

All true--but I think it's worth noting that you're going to be awful if you hate your job and the process only gets more and more difficult as you move up through the ranks. If you hate what you do, you're going to suck at your job. From what I've observed, much of getting "back on track" is pure networking and killing it at what you do now. I don't think I'll ever necessarily go back to banking, but I guess I could do PE down the line if I know enough people.

Jul 22, 2018

Hmmmmm, why not go into HF or AM, possibly even ER?
All are known to have better lifestyle than IB and are very interesting!

Jul 21, 2018

I'm not interested in any of those! If I were to exit, I'd either do a peculiar type of private equity firm, impact investing/VC, or a startup.

Jul 20, 2018

nothing you said is false, however that mentality only applies if your a type A loon who really thinks he is a BSD. The less defined path is great......as long as its actually a path and not a random trek through the hills

Ty

Jul 21, 2018

I agree. Perhaps I'll post an update in a few years :) If I live in a cardboard box, it'll be "Tales From the Back Office: Run Away!" or "Tales From the Back Office: Take the Risk!"

Jul 15, 2018

Starting a crypto currency fund is not the same as traditional IB...

Jul 13, 2018

Noted. My point is he absolutely hated finance and want nothing to do with it. And he said he love music and want to make a name for himself. Do you see him anywhere else in the mainstream media? No. I guess he wasn't that passionate to become a musician. A job is a job - anything you do is soul crashing and boring - but better do well if you want to make a serious amount of money.

Jul 21, 2018

Completely disagree on this one--I wouldn't say chasing a dream of becoming a musician is quite the same as exiting into tech or a different (and fairly lucrative) field.

Jul 16, 2018

Wow, I remember that thread from 2012. Ironic, the most famous thing about him is still the fact that he quit IB, that is, the prestige of his Analyst job...

Jul 13, 2018

I am sure 10 years later, he will stay talk about how he quit his investment banking job. Again as an analyst, there is nothing special about. Every year there are so many new analysts coming in. Talk about quitting after you become a director or partner; then that is something worth noting.

Jul 13, 2018

The only thing I'm wondering is, why leave banking for banking operations? If you don't like banking, why not move to ops at a tech company, because then you'd get to work on the 'future of how things work'? Plus, depending on company and size, it could be a lot more interesting and allow you to put your stamp on the industry a lot more than what I think you could do in banking ops.

    • 1
Jul 13, 2018

I agree here. Unless you'll be designing the AI technology yourself, at a major bank, the work you're doing may easily be more akin to "Project Management" rather than "Product Management" -- and I'm assuming you're more interested in the latter (gets into managing how the product is designed, what users think, etc., whereas the former is about creating internal teams and doing more internal ops driven stuff)

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Not as into product management, actually. A close friend of mine is a veteran product manager and I don't think that's quite my path. I'm actually really interested in the operations/strategy portion. The AI component just makes it all the more fascinating and challenging for me.

    • 1
Jul 13, 2018

Gotcha - to each their own

Jul 21, 2018

Totally valid critiques. I'm still interested in finance and lending, just not quite investment banking. I think my point on relationships really is important here--I have established ties to the firm and I know there are people here that will go to bat for me.

Jul 13, 2018

I would just be careful as to whether you're actually getting to play a role in real strategy and implementation. But perhaps you're using the term "back office" loosely here.

Is there an innovation strategy team at the bank that works with business units on identifying solutions they can implement via AI, partnerships, or investing (via Corp venture arm)? If you're also interested in private equity (but with fewer hours) or impact investing, and also have interest in tech, those roles might be more aligned.

If it's implementing AI by the bank building something in-house, I would be careful to see what they believe AI to be (depending on how conservative or aggressive the bank is towards investing on innovation). For instance, some may think RPA is AI... or some bank execs may actually be against AI (because they don't want the bad press of cutting cost by cutting obsolete employees, until their peers do, or because they understand the "black box" nature of it). In short, you want to make sure whatever group you join is supported by: a big budget that isn't heavily gated by naysayers, executive buy-in, management team with a lot of clout and autonomy.

Jul 21, 2018

It's pretty much an innovation strategy team with a near $1bn budget focused on the credit card arm of my BB. I've been pretty cautious going into this since AI is such a buzzword these days and I didn't want to work on tech that was maybe one touch above a decision-tree-driven chatbot. It's definitely more niche, though, which could be a cause for concern but I'm not super worried since this is very early in my career and I can probably pivot elsewhere if I do well enough.

Jul 21, 2018

+1 SB though, this is great! Thank you!

Jul 13, 2018

You're welcome! So long as where you're going has the forward-thinking mentality, budget, clout, and executive buy-in to actually innovate, it sounds like a really cool role. And after this you'll have the finance + strategy + project management profile that's great for startups and VC.

Jul 21, 2018

That's the goal! Cheers! :)

Jul 13, 2018

If you are going into an AI role why not look for Data Science positions? One of the posters above mentioned a stress free life, I can attest data science is stress free. Work from home, $100k salary, challenging work, set my own hours, low cost of living in the PNW.


"I am always saying "Glad to've met you" to somebody I'm not at all glad I met. If you want to stay alive, you have to say that stuff, though."
-- J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye

Jul 21, 2018

I considered it! But I have mad respect for the higher ups of this particular team, and to be honest, I want to work for them. They're just great people to learn from so early in my career.

Jul 16, 2018

Well done on being honest with yourself. That is by the far one of the hardest things to do in an environment which is really stressful and filled competition for days.

I say good on you and keep pursuing what makes you feel good - that is where the greatness is unearthed.

Corp. Fin. Analyst currently working two finance jobs (and a teaching gig and trying to save my music production solo career). I love avocado's. And yes Cape Town is the most beautiful place in the world. Don't believe me, come thru and find out.

Jul 21, 2018

Thank you! Fingers crossed it all goes well!

    • 1
Jul 16, 2018

This is pretty interesting, I think banking backoffice has tons of room for automation. I recently quit my position as a trader and set up my own deep learning rig and just learning while working on some side projects. I kind of regret not learning a bit more about back office processes whilst I was with a bank ironically since I'm sure there are lots of opportunities for implementing some of the new tech especially with what ai is capable of doing now. If you have the technical chops for it I guess you can jump to the other side once your familiar with the processes and start servicing the banks. In fact hit me up if you want to chat, I think this is a pretty interesting choice, I'm in Asia though

Jul 16, 2018

I strongly believe that as technology and implementation of AI/analytics becomes more robust in banks, the divide between back office and front office will become less meaningful. What a lot of people don't seem to understand is that there is so much low hanging fruit in terms of using pretty simple technology/analytics (no AI) to vastly improve processes and cut costs. If you find yourself in the right back office group, one that is leading the way in technology/AI/analytics/etc., compensation trajectory will be very, very competitive. Maybe you won't be an MD rainmaker bringing in millions per year but $500k+ is very possible.

    • 2
Jul 16, 2018

There is no doubt that robotic process automation is the way of the future for back office processes. We have been pitching our clients hard on this for the last 12 months or so. Like any other technology, and maybe even more so with AI, it will take time for big players in industry to adopt it. I think as others have posted above, AI technologies will not replace all jobs however the skill set required to do the job will drastically change and being on the forefront of having those skills will be beneficial.

    • 1
Jul 21, 2018

Are you in back office too?

Jul 16, 2018

I am not, in audit currently at a big 4 . Actually in the process of transferring over to M&A TAS however.

Jul 21, 2018

Nice! Congrats! Let me know if you ever want to discuss fin tech. I'm a major fan.

Jul 21, 2018

You both hit the nail on the head. This role entails completely building out our tech/AI capabilities from the bottom up. We're building out the team, implementing completely new tech, and rehauling the bank. That's crazy exciting. I'm stoked for it.

I'll be honest--I haven't given much thought to my earnings trajectory. I might stay on long enough to be an MD, but I might also exit and do something else. Check back in a few years! :)

Jul 16, 2018

Good for you, happiness is definitely very important.

Curious, what was your average hours in IBD? 85? 90?

Jul 21, 2018

80-100 easily. It's.. not great.

Jul 16, 2018

Hi,

This is my first post - long-time lurker here - but as someone who has been in BO for quite a while (BB accounting), I would caution against doing this.

There is no guarantee you will love the BO job either or that it will be 9 to 5. Mine is 9am to 8/9pm and I think it's ok (I'm trying to get into IBD so hours are not an issue) but just saying it might not be as nice as you think before starting.
Also getting out of BO is not easy, I've been trying for quite a while. Maybe it's different if you have IBD on your CV as well or if you can code well - which from your posts you seem to be able to.

Just my two cents, best of luck with your choice!

Jul 21, 2018

Thanks for the advice! What do you do in back office? I think I should be okay considering my role is very strategy focused and dominated by ex bankers/consultants. I'll probably work a 9 to 6/7, which is a massive improvement honestly.

Jul 21, 2018

You mentioned it already! Accounting! That's good. We'll see where this takes me--I'm pretty excited since it's a more tech-focused role. Half the battle is learning how to sell your experience and I think this will be super solid for me.

Jul 16, 2018

You sound very positive about the move, all the best!

Jul 18, 2018

how do they make you work 9-9 in accounting in a BB?

Jul 17, 2018

You'll probably find it as demanding as LevFin but without the hours and bonus. A good trade off imo.

Potential pivots in to fintech and c-suite down the road (COO/CIO).

Jul 21, 2018

Cannot tell if sarcastic or serious haha

Jul 17, 2018

Lol serious...

Jul 20, 2018

I made the mistake of going into it for the preftige too. Glad to see someone on here with a similar perspective, and I give you mad props for going your own way.

Jul 21, 2018

Thank you!! Are you still in banking?

Jul 20, 2018

Not for long ;)

Jul 20, 2018

Delete

Jul 21, 2018

Good for you! Hope you find something that makes you happier! :)

Jul 20, 2018

Lev fin ain't banking

Jul 21, 2018

lol wat

    • 1
Jul 20, 2018
Jul 21, 2018
Jul 21, 2018
Jul 24, 2018
Jul 21, 2018
Jul 26, 2018
Jul 18, 2018